A gift of 300,000 gloves for frontliners

With arms wide open: Chief reporter Sharon Ling (right) handing over the gloves to Sarawak General Hospital director Dr Ngian. Also present is chief pharmacist Stanley Riget.

PETALING JAYA: A total of 300,000 much-needed surgical gloves have reached medical frontliners in Sabah and Sarawak.

Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Kota Kinabalu took delivery of half of that number donated under the “Star Frontliners Initiative”.

Sabah Health Department director Datuk Dr Christina Rundi said assistance such as this was helpful and much needed as it showed that they had support from the public.

“This ensures that hospitals dealing with Covid-19 cases have continuous supplies of personal protection equipment (PPE),” she said after the handing-over ceremony at the hospital’s emergency command centre on Saturday.

She said PPEs were used in large amounts every day and it was important to ensure that there were ready stocks available at all times.

The “Frontliners Initiative” was launched by Star Media Group (SMG) under its Star Foundation to help provide essential medical supplies for the nation’s battle against Covid-19.

Asked what were the PPEs used by hospitals in Sabah dealing with the pandemic, Dr Rundi said they included disposable isolation gowns, shoe and boot covers, operating theatre caps, nitrile gloves, hand sanitisers and three-ply masks.

“Our frontliners also use jumpsuits, N95 masks, face shields and disposable aprons,” she said.

She explained that the specifications for these PPEs differed and not all could be used by frontliners dealing with Covid-19 patients.

“Those handling Covid-19 cases directly have to wear PPEs of different specifications from those dealing with the first or second generation contacts of these patients, and those, in turn, are not the same as the ones used in other hospital departments,” she added.

Meanwhile, Sarawak General Hospital (SGH) in Kuching received the other 150,000 gloves.

SGH director Dr Ngian Hie Ung said the gloves would be used by the hospital’s staff, especially the frontliners.

“We appreciate donations and the public’s concern at this time,” she said at the handover of the items.

SGH is one of four designated Covid-19 hospitals in Sarawak, along with Sibu, Bintulu and Miri Hospitals.

The gloves presented to Sarawak General Hospital and Queen Elizabeth Hospital were part of Supermax Corp Bhd’s donation of 500,000 gloves to the “Star Frontliners Initiative”.

The other 200,000 gloves were distributed equally to Hospital Tuanku Jaafar in Seremban and three hospitals in Johor – Hospital Enche Besar Hajjah Kalsom in Kluang, Hospital Permai Johor Baru and Hospital Sultanah Aminah, also in Johor Baru.

Star Media Group pledged RM1mil to kickstart the fund.

Donations can be made to Star Foundation – Medical Fund’s Public Bank account (31-9984-9230) via bank transfer, credit or debit cards. The collection will end on April 25.

For queries on the “Star Frontliners Initiative” and tax exemption receipt, email starfoundation@thestar.com.my, call 1-300-88-7827 or visit starfoundation.com.my.

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